Property of a Wilkesboro-based nonprofit that provided emergency housing for domestic violence victims 24/7 and related services for decades is being sold to pay creditors under Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceedings.

Sheltered Aid to Families in Emergencies (SAFE) Inc. filed for bankruptcy on March 30. The nonprofit ceased operations in mid-February due to lack of funds, said SAFE Board Chairman Sandy Sheppard.

The SAFE house, a former private residence on Woodland Boulevard in Wilkesboro that housed 14 people at a time, is the primary asset that will be sold, said Robert Laney, an attorney in North Wilkesboro representing the debtors (SAFE board).

The house is listed with a county property tax value of $166,800 and personal property (furniture and computer equipment) worth $4,925 in papers filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Statesville.

The papers also list liabilities totaling $135,246, including $69,106 in priority unsecured claims and $66,139 in nonpriority unsecured claims.

Priority creditors and their claims include the Internal Revenue Service with $42,308 in taxes and penalties.

Salaries totaling $26,797 are also among priority unsecured claims, including $6,250 for Compton Fortuna of Moravian Falls, SAFE director and chief financial officer since 2017; $7,778 for Sosandra Cardwell of the SAFE staff; and the remainder for other people.

Laney said he would file additional salary claims at no charge. His phone number is 336-838-1674, ext. 262.

The largest nonpriority secured claims are $11,720, sought by RJ Young, an office equipment supplier; $9,579, First Citizens Bank, $7,500, Jodi Province Counseling in Wilkesboro; and $7,110, Wells Fargo.

John Taylor, an attorney in Charlotte, was appointed by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge in Statesville as bankruptcy trustee. Taylor is responsible for protecting SAFE’s assets and the interests of creditors.

Taylor couldn’t be reached for comment, but Laney said he also is responsible for transferring medical records of SAFE clients to the Wilkes Children’s Advocacy Center.

Taylor’s phone number is 704-540-3622 and his email address is

People needing services that SAFE provided are being referred to Domestic Abuse is Not Acceptable (DANA), an agency in Alleghany County.

The DANA office number is 336-372-2846, the toll free crisis line is 866-261-2362, the crisis line is 336-372-3262 and the Spanish crisis line is 336-657-0466.

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